The Canadian government should stick up for minorities in Ukraine

To the Editor:

Canadian governments have been supporting those who came to power in Ukraine in February 2014.
In Canada our two language groups both have internal cultural protections and seek to maintain them.
Minorities in Ukraine have just had theirs removed – their languages are to be taught only to Grade 4.
Ought Canada speak against this? Or continue to give those doing this what is wished from us.
Chrystia Freeland is to be commended for stressing the importance of maintaining Canada’s cultural protections at a NAFTA dinner.
As Foreign Minister this belief ought to determine her responses to Ukraine’s government requests for access to Canada’s satellite images, weapons and Canadian forces acting on a peace keeping mission while training troops for Ukraine.
The action by President Petro Poroshenko of taking away schooling of children of minorities in their language aside from Grades 1 to 4, directly opposite and totally against Canadian cultural patterns, was signed just as he returned from a visit to Canada. While here he requested Ukraine have access to Canadian satellite images be added to what is being considered, our providing weapons to Ukraine – both additions to Canadian forces training its troops being extended to 2019.
Prime Minister Trudeau would be wise to continue not committing Canada to a role in Poroschenko’s UN Peacekeeping suggestion.
By joining Hungary, Poland, Romania and Russia in expressing dissatisfaction to the Ukrainian President over his treatment of minorities, he and his Foreign Minister would be acting in a manner consistent with her expressed concern for Canadian culture in the NAFTA context

Joe Hueglin
Niagara Falls, ON.


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